The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Nareit — White House cheers Republicans for storming impeachment hearing

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--> A midday take on what's happening in politics and how to have a sense of humor about it.*

*Ha. Haha. Hahah. Sniff. Haha. Sniff. Ha--breaks down crying hysterically.


The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Nareit — White House cheers Republicans for storming impeachment hearing | Press secretary says Trump 'happy' to see it | Trump allies mull how to quash impeachment | Poll shows independents more supportive of impeachment | White House defends Trump's 'scum' remark | Cummings lies in state at Capitol | Republican Meadows offers emotional tribute | Obama to speak at funeral | Romney's fights with Trump rankle GOP colleagues



Omg, I am so sorry I called you ‘scum’!

I meant ‘human scum of the earth’:

This morning, White House press secretary Stephanie GrishamStephanie GrishamLive coverage: Schiff closes with speech highlighting claims of Trump's corruption Trump calls latest impeachment hearings 'a great day for Republicans' Vindman clashes with GOP MORE said President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive takeaways from the Democratic debate As Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Leading Democrats largely pull punches at debate MORE does not regret calling “Never Trump” Republicans “human scum” because, she argued, they “deserve strong language like that.” 

Grisham said on “Fox & Friends”: “The people who are against him, and who have been against him and working against him since the day they took office are just that. It is horrible that people are working against a president who’s delivering results for this country and has been since day one.”



On Wednesday, President Trump tweeted, “The Never Trumper Republicans, though on respirators with not many left, are in certain ways worse and more dangerous for our Country than the Do Nothing Democrats. Watch out for them, they are human scum!”

Trump kept going, but that tweet gives you the gist. Here’s the full series of tweets if you want to see:



GOP Rep. Adam KinzingerAdam Daniel KinzingerLawmakers spar over surveillance flight treaty with Russia Honoring service before self House approves Turkey sanctions in rare bipartisan rebuke of Trump MORE (Ill.), a House Foreign Affairs Committee member, told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer: "To call anybody human scum is beneath the office of the presidency. You can't say that, right? You're the president. You have different standards.” Watch Kinzinger’s full remarks:


It’s Thursday — Christmas Eve is two months from today! Sorry if I just stressed you out. I’m Cate Martel with a quick recap of the morning and what’s coming up. Send comments, story ideas and events for our radar to — and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.

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PROGRAMMING NOTE: I will be off Friday for a long weekend! The Hill’s Reid Wilson will be taking the reins tomorrow. See you on Monday!





*Cue Jon Snow’s voice* ‘STORM THE SCIF’:
A few dozen Republicans stormed closed-door impeachment testimony yesterday as a protest to the inquiry, causing chaos and delaying a hearing from a top Pentagon official.

What is this ‘SCIF’ I keep hearing of?: A sensitive compartmented information facility. Basically, it’s a secure room for private congressional testimony. Everything you need to know about the SCIF:

Here is video of Republicans storming the room:



From the White House: "I’m glad they did it. The Dems have been doing everything behind closed doors and in secret and so it’s about time somebody made a very bold stand, which is I guess a sit-in, which is what they did. And it was great, and the point was well taken," White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said on “Fox & Friends.”

From Rep. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarBooker responds to Onion article mocking Buttigieg over stock photo Hillicon Valley: Progressives oppose funding bill over surveillance authority | Senators call for 5G security coordinator | Facebook gets questions over location tracking | Louisiana hit by ransomware attack Progressives oppose spending stopgap measure over surveillance authority extension MORE (D-Minn): “This is what happens when people elect members more interested in media hits than the protection of our national security ‍♀️ FYI to everyone who is concerned about my security clearances, I at least know to not bring my cell phones to SCIF and follow protocol.”

From Rep. Matt GaetzMatthew (Matt) GaetzWoman who threw drink at Gaetz sentenced to 15 days in jail Bottom Line Gaetz wants woman who threw drink at him to serve time MORE (R-Fla.), a vocal Trump supporter: "If we had rules, [Speaker] Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiKlobuchar shuts down idea a woman can't beat Trump: 'Pelosi does it every day' Budowsky: Trump destroying GOP in 2018, '19, '20 On The Money: Senate scraps plan to force second shutdown vote | Trump tax breaks for low-income neighborhoods draw scrutiny | McConnell rips House Dems for holding up trade deal MORE would have put this issue to a vote and established rules. But the Democrats want to preserve the most operational flexibility. So if they're going to have a world with no rules, we got to stop thinking that we can use the Marquis of Queensbury rules of engagement when we’re fighting against an angry pack of rabid hyenas. And that’s what we’re facing.”


How to take out the mind flayer: 

Via The Hill’s Jordain Carney, allies of President Trump in the Senate are trying to figure out how to quickly quash the impeachment articles if they pass the Democratic-controlled Senate.

The two options for Republicans in the Senate: “Republicans, who believe it is likely the House will impeach Trump, are weighing what is best for their party: a rapid dismissal of impeachment or a vote to acquit Trump after a trial. Sixty-seven votes are needed to convict a president.”

How this could play out:



Via The Hill’s Niall Stanage, “Republican schisms over President Trump are growing deeper as new details emerge about his actions on Ukraine and Democrats push hard for impeachment.”


Interesting read — where independent voters stand on impeachment:

Via The Hill’s Jonathan Easley, “New polls are finding independent voters increasingly supportive of impeachment, the latest sign of trouble for President Trump as he struggles to defend himself only 13 months out from Election Day.”

For example — here’s one poll: “The latest Quinnipiac University survey found overall support for House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry reaching its highest level yet, at 55 percent, up 4 points from last week. The change was almost entirely driven by a 16-point swing in favor of the investigation among self-described independents.” 

Why some Democrats are optimistic: “Those results have Democrats cautiously optimistic that their message on impeachment is resonating and potentially setting their eventual nominee up to land the knockout blow against Trump in the general election next year.”

Why some Democrats are pessimistic: “But not all Democrats are convinced the impeachment process is helping them. Some remain deeply skeptical that the Ukraine controversy will punch through among ordinary Americans, believing that impeachment does not register as a top issue and that Trump has weathered countless other controversies with his base of support fully intact.”



GOP senators grumble: ‘Who’s the newbie?’:

Via The Hill’s Alexander Bolton, “Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyTrump FDA pick dodges questions on Trump's flavored vape ban Congress feels heat to act on youth vaping Progressive Democrats ramp up attacks on private equity MORE’s (R-Utah) public battles with President Trump are taking a toll on his relationship with fellow GOP senators, with many resenting the implication that they’re afraid of standing up to the president.”

Romney’s role: “Romney has replaced retired Sens. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeLindsey Graham basks in the impeachment spotlight Kelly, McSally virtually tied in Arizona Senate race: poll The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Nareit — White House cheers Republicans for storming impeachment hearing MORE (R-Ariz.) and Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerRNC says ex-Trump ambassador nominee's efforts 'to link future contributions to an official action' were 'inappropriate' Lindsey Graham basks in the impeachment spotlight The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Nareit — White House cheers Republicans for storming impeachment hearing MORE (R-Tenn.) as the go-to senator for voicing dissension within the Senate GOP ranks when Trump finds himself in hot water.” 

Meaning: “That distinction has made Romney one of the most high-profile freshman Republican senators in recent years, but it has also fueled grumbling among his colleagues.” 

For example — from­ Sen. James InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeOvernight Defense — Presented by Boeing — Pentagon watchdog says Syria withdrawal hurt ISIS fight | Vindman testifies on third day of public hearings | Lawmakers to wrap up defense bill talks this week Lawmakers expect to finish defense policy bill negotiations this week Bipartisan senators urge national security adviser to appoint 5G coordinator MORE (R-Okla.), one of Trump’s biggest defenders: “Because one election didn’t turn out the way that Mitt wanted it to turn out, he’s critical of the president. ... So, I’m not pleased with it.”


Happening today — Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsDebate gives Democrats a chance to focus on unaddressed issues of concern to black voters Maloney wins House Oversight gavel The Hill's Morning Report - Wild Wednesday: Sondland testimony, Dem debate take center stage MORE lies in state: 

The casket of Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) arrived at the U.S. Capitol this morning for a day of remembrance.

Spotted at the Capitol for the service: “Former Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanIs Joe Biden finished? Krystal Ball previews fifth Democratic debate Former Speaker Boehner's official portrait unveiled MORE, Rev. Al Sharpton and former Oversight Chairman Darrell IssaDarrell Edward IssaWhy the GOP march of mad hatters poses a threat to our Democracy Elijah Cummings, native son of Baltimore, gets emotional send-off from Democratic luminaries Lawmakers come together to honor Cummings: 'One of the greats in our country's history' MORE.” (Via Politico’s Melanie Zanona

Photo of the procession:



10:30 a.m. EDT: A ceremony was held when the casket arrived at the U.S. Capitol. Livestream:

1–7 p.m. EDT: Cummings’s body lies in state at the U.S. Capitol. Livestream:

Tomorrow: The funeral in Baltimore. A few of the speakers: Former Presidents Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaAs Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Debate gives Democrats a chance to focus on unaddressed issues of concern to black voters Is Joe Biden finished? MORE and Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonFeehery: Pivoting to infrastructure could help heal post-impeachment wounds Press: Ukraine's not the only outrage The 2 events that reshaped the Democratic primary race MORE, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonAs Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Harris rips Gabbard over Fox appearances during Obama years Steyer, Gabbard and Yang shut out of early minutes of Democratic debate MORE 



Rep. Mark MeadowsMark Randall MeadowsMichelle Obama presents Lin-Manuel Miranda with National Portrait Award Sondland testimony looms over impeachment hearings this week Democrats seize on new evidence in first public impeachment hearing MORE (R-N.C.), a founder of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, gave a tribute to the late Elijah Cummings and said those who thought their friendship was surprising did not know Cummings well.

In Meadows’s words: “We are called to give honor where honor is due, so it is fitting that we are here today to honor a friend. He's called a number of things, father, husband, friend, chairman. For me, I was privileged enough to be able to call him a dear friend. Some have classified it as an unexpected friendship, but for those of us that know Elijah, it's not unexpected or surprising.”

Watch Meadows's full remarks: Starting at 57:10. 



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Oh wow this is funny:


It’s only 15 seconds. Trust me, it’s worth watching: Video:



The House is out. President Trump and Vice President Pence are in Washington, D.C.

11:30 a.m. EDT: President Trump received an intelligence briefing.

Noon: The Senate holds a cloture vote on a nomination. The Senate’s full schedule today:

1:45 p.m. EDT: President Trump participates in the Diwali Ceremonial Lighting of the Diya.

4:30 p.m. EDT: President Trump presents the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Roger Penske.

Tomorrow: Former Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speak at the funeral of the late Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) in Baltimore. Details from The Baltimore Sun:

Nov. 20: The next Democratic presidential primary debate. Tidbit: An all-female panel will moderate this debate.



10:30 a.m. EDT: A ceremony for the late Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) at the U.S. Capitol. Livestream:

11:25 a.m. EDT: Vice President Pence spoke at the Frederic V. Malek Memorial Lecture in Washington, D.C. Livestream:

1 – 7 p.m. EDT: The late Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) lies in state at the U.S. Capitol. Livestream:

2 p.m. EDT: Presidential candidate Marianne WilliamsonMarianne Williamson2020 primary debate guide: Everything you need to know ahead of the November forum 2020 Democrats demand action on guns after Santa Clarita shooting Williamson announces poverty plan with support for universal basic income, minimum wage MORE outlines her plan to create a Cabinet-level Department of Peace. Livestream:

7:30 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. PDT Sunday: CBS’s Norah O’Donnell interviews former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenFive takeaways from the Democratic debate As Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Leading Democrats largely pull punches at debate MORE and his wife, Jill Biden, for “60 Minutes.” 



Today is National Bologna Day.


Simone Biles is a national treasure:

Olympic gold medal gymnast Simone Biles threw the first pitch last night at the World Series. Video of her backflip twist from a standing position — nbd:


And because you made it to the end, here’s a moose enjoying the generous “snack” that a family put out for him: